Time Too Fast For An Old Man

Time is fleeting with ever-increasing velocity as we sweep past the markers recording journeys of 90-plus years.

A least, that’s the way it’s appeared to me in the hike between birthdays 96, the day after Boxing Day a year ago, and 97 a few days ago.

If there is an unknown historian recording the pages of my lifelong journey, he or she is turning the pages too quickly. Each day I seem to have less time for the things I want – and often need – to do.

I know all about the problems created when procrastination becomes the thief of time but having the “daybook” closed before I have time to complete the “things to do today” section can hardly be laid on me.

So it goes. Every afternoon, I reserve time for reading as Christmas usually brings me a mini-flood of books from well-read sons. With small boxes from daughters-in-law containing diet-defying treats like home-baked shortbread, assorted cookies, cheese and cracker nibbles and obligatory Christmas chocolates.

I enjoy the multitasking of nibbling, with maybe a sip of wine, while revelling in the fantastic writing of Wade Davis in “Into the Silence,” a powerfully written history of the men who served together during the First World War and climbed together in early attempts to conquer Mount Everest.

The Sunday Times reviews the book as “an elegy for a lost generation.” I agree, nibble, and read just a few more pages. Then rest my eyes for a few minutes.

The rest break can be considered a medical necessity. After all, less than a week ago, all I could see from my left eye was white fog. I was blind in one eye. Modern surgery has corrected the problem. I can see clearly again but still welcome a few minutes of restful shut-eye.

Just a few minutes – but time doesn’t hesitate. In those few moments, someone, somehow, has moved all the clocks forward an hour. Maybe two. I can’t possibly have napped for two hours. But?

Ah, well. I was going to catch up with e-mails now long overdue. If you happen to be waiting and wondering, be patient. I will be in touch, maybe tomorrow if tempus doesn’t fugit and whoever’s turning my life’s pages takes a day off.

In the meantime –Happy New Year. May 2021 bring you everything you need which is not the same as everything you want


  1. Happy New Jim and Happy belated Birthday! You are an amazing man, every time I read your articles I gain more respect and admiration for you.

  2. Merry Christmas, Happy Birthday, and Happy New Year! Your words still make a special impression on me, just as they did when we were 25 years younger.
    Janice in Nanaimo

  3. While I’m almost a couple decades behind you I, too, notice that time flies ever faster. My weeks are three days long and each day has only a few hours of wake time. I ask myself: “When did I in my earlier life find time to make a living?”

    Upon reading your article I Googled “why time goes faster as you get older” and instantly got more than half a billion returns. We’re obviously not alone and these sites attempt scientific explanations for this phenomenon.

    I will spend part of this typically truncated day analyzing this science.

    Happy New Year!

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